Jun 18, 2020 - Health

California issues statewide face mask order as coronavirus cases climb


A crowd of people, some wearing face masks, walk through the streets of Solvang, Calif. Photo: George Rose/Getty Images

California on Thursday issued a statewide order requiring people to wear face coverings in public settings.

Why it matters: The order comes the same day that the state saw its biggest increase in new cases, with 4,084 new confirmed infections. California Gov. Gavin Newsom cited a body of scientific research that indicates asymptomatic people can still spread the virus.

Between the lines: Improved testing can cause the number of confirmed cases in a particular state to rise, even if that state's outbreak isn't getting that much worse.

What he's saying: "Simply put, we are seeing too many people with faces uncovered - putting at risk the real progress we have made in fighting the disease," Newsom said.

  • "California's strategy to restart the economy and get people back to work will only be successful if people act safely and follow health recommendations."

Details... Californians must wear masks when in the following situations:

  • Inside or in line to enter an indoor public space.
  • When seeking health care services, in places such as hospitals, pharmacies and veterinary clinics.
  • While awaiting or on public transit. Drivers are also required to wear face coverings.
  • At work.
  • While outside with people who are not members of the same household.
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